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Abstract

The Note examines the history, evolution, elements, and application of the Commerce Clause doctrine. Part II, Sections A through C, concentrate on the history of the Supreme Court’s interpretation of the Commerce Clause, focusing extensively on Wickard v. Filburn, which the majority in Raich held controlling, and United States v. Lopez and United States v. Morrison, which the dissent would have held as controlling. Part II, Sections D and E, provide an overview of the Controlled Substances Act, whose constitutionality was challenged as applied in Gonzales v. Raich, and the Compassionate Use Act of California, which led to the conflict in Raich. Part III provides a statement of the facts, the procedural history, and the United States Supreme Court decision in Gonzales v. Raich. Part IV, Sections A and B, analyze the Raich decision, arguing that based on fundamental legal arguments the Lopez/Morrison standard applied in Raich is inadequate. In Part IV, Sections C through E, the meanings of the words “commerce,” “among the several States,” and “to regulate” are analyzed based on the text and history of the Constitution. Part IV, Section F, proposes a Neo-Gibbons standard, and Section G applies this standard to Commerce Clause jurisprudence.

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